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Chocolate Eclair Cake

Graham crackers are the key to this easy and delicious no-bake cake.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 12

Photography: Mike Krautter


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • Coarse salt
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 8 large egg yolks
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 14-ounce box graham crackers
  • 8 ounces finely chopped dark chocolate


  1. Whisk together sugar, cornstarch, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a medium saucepan. Whisk together milk and egg yolks in a bowl. Add milk mixture to the saucepan, along with butter. Cook, stirring, over medium until mixture comes to a boil. Let boil, stirring, 1 minute. Remove from heat and add vanilla.

  2. Strain pastry cream through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it directly onto surface of pastry cream to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours or up to 2 days.

  3. Whisk 1/2 cup heavy cream until firm peaks form. Whisk chilled pastry cream until smooth, then fold whipped cream into pastry cream.

  4. Arrange 1/3 graham crackers on the bottom of a 9-by-13-inch pan. Spread half of the pastry cream mixture on top, smoothing it with a spatula to make an even layer. Repeat with half of remaining crackers and remainder of the pastry cream. Arrange remaining crackers on top of pastry cream.

  5. Heat remaining 1 cup heavy cream in a small saucepan over medium-high until just boiling. Pour over chocolate in a small heatproof bowl; cover with a plate. Let stand until chocolate melts, then stir until smooth. Spread over graham cracker layer, smoothing top with an offset spatula. Refrigerate to set, at least 2 hours and up to overnight.

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